Featured Panelists

Invited Scholar Panel

Dr. Robert Royal

Dr. Robert Royal is the founder and president of the Faith & Reason Institute in Washington, D.C. and editor-in-chief of The Catholic Thing (www.thecatholicthing.org). His books include: 1492 And All That: Political Manipulations of History (1992), Reinventing the American People: Unity and Diversity Today (1995), The Virgin and the Dynamo: The Use and Abuse of Religion in the Environment Debate (1999), Dante Alighieri in the Spiritual Legacy Series (1999), The Catholic Martyrs of the Twentieth Century: A Comprehensive Global History (2000), The Pope’s Army (2006), The God That Did Not Fail (2006) and A Deeper Vision: The Catholic Intellectual Tradition in the Twentieth Century (2015). Dr. Royal holds a B.A. and M.A. from Brown University and a Ph.D. in Comparative Literature from the Catholic University of America. 

Prof. Teresa Stanton Collett

Prof. Teresa Stanton Collett is a professor of law at the University of St. Thomas, MN School of Law.  She has published numerous legal articles and is the co-author of a law casebook on professional responsibility and co-editor of a collection of essays exploring “catholic” and “Catholic” perspectives on American law.  Professor Collett is an elected member of the American Law Institute, and has testified before committees of the United States Senate and House of Representatives, as well as before legislative committees in several states.  In 2009, His Holiness Pope Benedict XVI appointed Collett to a five year term on the Pontifical Council for the Family.

Dr. Wilfred M. McClay

Dr. Wilfred M. McClay currently holds the G.T. and Libby Blankenship Chair in the History of Liberty at the University of Oklahoma.  His books include: Masterless: Self and Society in Modern America (1994), The Student’s Guide to U.S. History (2000), Religion Returns to the Public Square: Faith and Policy in America (2003), Figures in the Carpet: Finding the Human Person in the American Past (2007), and Why Place Matters: Geography, Identity, and Public Life in Modern America (2014).  Dr. McClay received his bachelor of arts degree cum laude from St. John’s College in Annapolis, Md., and his doctoral degree in history from Johns Hopkins University in Baltimore.  

Invited Professional Panel

Mark Lauinger, Senior VP of Client Services

As Senior Vice President of Client Services, Mark manages our team of Venture Advisors who work closely with client companies helping them with market assessments, evaluation of technical and commercial feasibility, review and refinement of client business plans and financial models, determination of company valuations, guidance in the preparation and delivery of investor presentations, and identification of potential capital sources given the client company’s specific stage of development. He also oversees the SeedStep Angel group, managed by i2E, Inc.

A graduate of both Georgetown University with a Bachelor degree in Business Administration and Rice University with an MBA with concentration in finance and entrepreneurship, Mark brings more than two decades of experience working for both large and small corporations. Most recently, he was Chief Operating Officer and Vice President for Strategic Alliances with Reliant HR Technology in Tulsa. He also has experience at USIS in Tulsa, and Ashford, Inc., and Koch Industries in Houston.

Melissa McLawhorn Houston, Oklahoma Commissioner of Labor

Melissa McLawhorn Houston serves the State of Oklahoma as Commissioner of Labor. She was appointed to office by Oklahoma Governor Mary Fallin on November 20th, 2015. Houston is an experienced administrator in of state government and considerable experience in state agency operational management, legislative process, and budgeting. Houston also has an in-depth background in public policy and played a key role in criminal justice reform efforts and federal anti-terrorism legislation. As a survivor of the Oklahoma City Murrah bombing, she is a frequent speaker on the impact of terrorism. Previously, she served as Chief of Staff for the Oklahoma Attorney General and for the Oklahoma Office of Homeland Security. Houston attended the University of Oklahoma where she earned a bachelor’s degree in Letters and a Juris Doctor. She is active in the community serving on several boards including the Oklahoma City National Memorial and is a graduate of Leadership Oklahoma and Leadership Norman. She and her husband, Ben Houston, who also is an attorney, live in Norman with their two young sons.

Tony Tyler

Being born and raised in Oklahoma City, Tony J. Tyler is married to his high school sweetheart and is the father of four children. After earning a degree in History from the University of Dallas in 1992, Tony began his career at Tyler Media - a media company consisting of radio stations, television stations, and an outdoor advertising company. Tony works alongside his brother Ty and their father Ralph. The Tyler family has been in the media business since 1965.





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